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Could be

When we couldn’t hear the helicopters anymore, we knew they’d abandoned us. Though from their point of view we’d be MIA. At least until they saw our dismembered corpses being paraded through the street.
There were just three of us. A Seargent, a PFC, ad myself. We had no way out. Certain death was on the other side of the door. All we could do was wait. Crouching in the dark, watching the door counting our last breaths, thinking our final thoughts.
The walls were paper thin. We could already hear them searching apartments just down the hall. Screams were answered by bursts of machine gunfire.
It was too dark to see all the rats, but we could hear their claws tapping on the floor. They were coming to scavenge the softening flesh of the bodies piled on the bed. A fat one brushed up against my foot, and I kicked the back end of its plump body as it scurried away.
A few units over someone squeezed the trigger and bullet snapped in my ear. There was a flash of pain and the warmth of spilli…

My Dream

From the deepest sleep, at a moment when my mind and spirit had wholly unbound themselves from this mortal coil, I found myself among the clouds. High enough to look down upon the entirety of my family’s capital with the same view as God himself.
It all lay beneath me.
The bustling plazas built in the shadows of the majestic peaks of our ancient cathedrals in the heart of the old city. A center connected by webs of smooth lantern-lit roads and thoroughfares to the steadily encroaching smog shrouded industrial districts built along the banks of the winding river that bisected the city.
I took this omnipotence for granted for at that moment it was what had always been. Yet, I was keenly aware that this was the first time I had noticed the startling dimensions of the faceless steel buildings. The towering smokestacks cast shadows longer than any castles spire and with a far greater reach than the crowning cross of any cathedral.
Somewhere a steam whistle screamed loud enough for the enti…

Morbid Curiosity

Emporer Menelik stared into the gleaming glass eyes of the two faced-wolf. The taxidermied beast stood on an altar. At nearly eye level with the mighty warlord, the lifeless animal’s dual faces were locked in a perpetual and silent scowl that gleamed an impossible cluster of cerated teeth. Its dual faces locked in a perpetual snarl gleaming rows of serrated teeth. Menelik’s heart froze in his chest.
Did it just growl?
Menelik was shaken from his trance by the arrival of his high priest.
“All is ready my Emporer,” the silk draped religious functionary informed him.
Menelik took a breath and nodded his head. “I am ready,” he said with unmistakable confidence
During his reign, Menelik had acquired a vast collection of foreign curiosities. They varied wildly in origin, but what they all had in common was they defied the warlord’s understanding of the world. He kept a menagerie of bizarre creatures. Some were of truly dazzling designs painted in colors and patterns well beyond anything on …

Jung-Bot

"Alright, allow the Jung-Unit 2-6 hours to fully integrate itself with your neurobiology. If you start experiencing headache, insomnia, nausea, seizures, or hallucinations, please call user support." This friendly warning was the last thing the sales girl named Alex told Josh about his new purchase just before he walked out of the glass pyramid that wasn't a store but a "gateway," and only after friendly technicians had injected a microscopic brain-altering machine into his blood.  Alex didn't seem particularly worried about these potentially lethal side effects, so neither was Josh. It was with the deepest conviction Josh believed the power of information technology made humanity the master of its own evolutionary path and while Josh was walking to the bus stop a machine a fraction the size of a grain of sand was busy weaving itself into his nervous system. When it finished, Josh's physical brain would be powered by the latest in 6G network technology. He…

Volume 2 now on sale!

I'm happy to announce I've put out a second volume of previously published short stories. If you're into diabetic vampires, terrorists with borderline personality disorder, murderous yuppies, and embarrassing moments in the afterlife then you'll wanna check it out! 

Click here to purchase the Kindle edition



Eternity's Waiting Room

John wasn't sure how long it had been since he died. Nothing ever changed on the seemingly infinite plane of nothingness. He hadn't aged, he and everyone else there looked exactly the same as the first day he arrived. The force of time had no meaning in the vast emptiness. He was moving slowly up in a line where he could see no end and no beginning. He held what looked like a massive deli ticket that had the number 8,456,435,434 printed on it. The line contained people from all walks of life who had died in a variety of different ways. Geography often played a rather large role in this. Of course, there were people who had simply made it to a ripe old age and had gently drifted off into death, but there seemed to be fewer and fewer of those arriving. Far more often John was meeting victims of war, famine, disease. There were also plenty of people who had decided to expedite their addition to the line. John had met some them, too many to count. In fact, just in front of him,…

It was, now it Isn't

Existence is far too transitory a state to get comfortable inhabiting. Everything is, for a while, until it isn’t. What fundamental aspects of you or your world currently are but are soon not about to be? Are you dreaming? In a simulation? Is everything just as it seems, but in just a few seconds someone is going to kick open your door and blow you away with a shotgun? If so at one point in the past, do you suspect you and this other individual were set on this collision course?  Was it some point in the last few years or was this event set in motion long before your existence by forces of such a macro nature they are imperceptible to us? Can this be considered fate or is fate just a euphemism for chaos? The twin nuclear reactions that slaughtered hundreds of thousands in a flash of light hotter than the sun each occurred in 1/1 millionth of a second. There were cities, and there were people until..there weren’t

The Flash Fiction Collection

Over the years, I've written several "flash fiction" stories that I fortunate enough to see accepted and printed by various publishers around the globe. Flash fiction pieces are generally 1,000 words, or less so this first volume comes out to a mere 32 pages, perfect for a commute or just for some leisurely afternoon reading and it's only 99 cents!
If you enjoy my work, please consider purchasing a copy here:


Dissociated

It is me whose going away but from my perspective, the world is what’s shutting down, gradually like a carnival closing at the end of the night. The spinning rides glowing with electric fire sat quiet and inert as they were dismantled and quietly packed away
Dimming shadows on the wall murmur about me in the past tense. Sometimes I try and speak, but I am inaudible to these living apparitions. Their names slide away with everything else. My memories flicker and blur like degraded film. I arbitrarily mutter the words I hear in these living dreams, and it betrays my thoughts to anyone close enough to understand. It is physically watching time disintegrate. The physical and metaphysical dis-entwine the body, the vessel that sustains what is behind the eyes, the soul if you’d like dissolves in the still and frigid. Experience itself is destroyed along with me. What I am reliving will soon never of happened to anyone.

Fake News

The podcast studio was the size of a large closet. In the middle of the room was a table with four mounted microphones in the center, two facing right the other two pointed left and a small soundboard set up on the upper right corner. The plaster wall was painted black with the words Information Defense Force painted in bold red letters across the surface.
Todd and Ryan were sitting across from each other, their faces illuminated by the glow of their open laptops. Ryan, the host, was in a plush leather office chair, while Ryan sat in a folding chair. Today, IDF was going live. The corporate-Marxists Hollywood machine had just launched a new phase in its ongoing cultural assault so it was up to self-appointed leaders like Todd to rally their troops and let them know what they could do to fight back.
"The SJDs have taken off their gloves now." Todd declared. "If what they're doing doesn't have you convinced they want to destroy the very basis of western culture, …

Flap the Wings

There are people you have no idea even exist and who at this moment you may have no conceivable connections to who will inflict pain on you so deep it will ingrain itself into your neurological wiring. There are other people out there though,  whose existence you are unaware of and who are just as oblivious to your existence who upon you will replicate the same pain that emotionally deformed you. It is a misguided form of vengeance. Likely, you'll only ever have the vaguest notion of what happened, but there is also a chance you'll feel perpetual and tremendous guilt for it. It doesn't matter, though, as this is inevitable. They have a word for it "cycle."

Po$eidon

King Agesilaus and his entourage stood on the beach pensively watching the golden sun ascend from beneath where the twin planes of turquoise water and crystal sky merged into an endless gleaming expanse of blue.
The morning tide was coming in, and the otherwise still waters were clawing their way up the shore, breaking over the rocks and spreading out over the sand before slowly withdrawing and coming in again. A slight breeze swept over the water and through the King’s coarse ash colored beard and to the discernment of his entourage, the great man audibly shuddered.
“Posiden approaches,” Agesilaus cooly announced.
The men all trained their eyes, several meters they could see long white hair drifting in the water.  Everyone behind the King took a step back when they saw a wrinkled forehead break through the surface followed by eyes with the electric glow of lightning.
He was still far out, but already his broad shoulders and impossibly sculpted chest were already several feet above th…

Motives

There were three of them in the car. Sandra in the driver’s seat, Adam her eight-year-old son and their nameless armed abductor in the back. They had been driving in silence for hours with no discernible destination. The armed man sitting in Sandra’s back seat next to her child but as they put the city further and further behind them. Sandra started to worry about what his intentions might be.
They were on an isolated and unlit country road. Sandra could only see down the pavement as far as the beams of her headlights stretched sometimes revealing the carcasses of animals pulverized by trucks, some of which had managed to crawl to the edge of the forests that flanked the road leaving a crimson smear on the black asphalt.
A warning light on the dashboard flashed warning Sandra they were almost out of gas. She gritted her teeth and looked up at the mirror and saw the kidnapper staring out the window while he chewed on his nails.
Her voice was a trembling whisper. “Excuse me.”
He didn’t …

Free Sample

This is the first story in the Kindle book I compiled. It's a collection of the first stories I managed to get published.  There is a little something for everyone here. Humor, war, science fiction. If you reasonably enjoy this piece consider purchasing the collection: Here
                                                  In the Blink of an Eye:
Up until now, the grinding gears of history revolved at such a slow pace that our perception of it was like a puzzle, the constantly changing fragments creating an eternally changing picture inhabited and shaped by generations, but progress made it possible for the change to arrive in the form of a flash just a billionth of a second long with a blinding light and the pain of flesh-searing fire that burned away the world I knew as if it were covered in lighter fluid. For us, there were no blue skies. Daytime was just when the sun was shining bright enough to penetrate through the acrid black clouds that had consumed the sky and mingled with …

New Kindle Book Release

So after many years of considering it, I finally pulled the trigger and made a short Kindle book featuring my published works from the early days. It was actually quite a bit easier a process than I thought! Anyway if you're interested in having Dime Novels on your Kindle you can for the modest price of $1.99

Three acts are not required to tell a story. A story can be cold in a moment. These are the instances that are the pivots on which existence turns.  What would you do if you met Jesus at a party or had the misfortune of dying under a mushroom cloud? You’ll find all of this and a bit more than you might have expected in these 91 pages of existential mischief.

https://www.amazon.com/Dime-Novels-Oblivion-symptoms-condition-ebook/dp/B07RFJ4Y9N/ref=sr_1_fkmrnull_1?keywords=dime+novels+from+oblivion&qid=1557246169&s=digital-text&sr=1-1-fkmrnull
I'm proud to announce The Prachya Review has included me in their Feminism and Social Justice Issue! There's nothing I can say about it the editor hasn't already said better. Take a look at the issue and hear what some of these voices have to say. Hopefully, you'll walk away with a new perspective on this kaleidoscope of human experience. Check it out here
https://www.prachyareview.com/april-2019/

Little Lady Entropy

The softly lit room was filled with scattered clusters of black-clothed mourners conversing about a range of things from mortgages, lawns, and gutters to the exorbitant cost of education and where to get the best deal on a new set of tires.
The old man laying silently in the coffin on the other side of the room with his hands crossed over his chest in the shadow of a gleaming silver crucifix mounted on the wall was at this point in the morning just a centerpiece. These were the last moments' air or light would ever touch his flesh.
This was seven-year-old Grace’s first such function.  She stood at the opposite end of the room glancing at the gold trimmed pine box. In the child’s mind death was associated with instant putridity. Her imagination conjured up images of lumbering zombies with blood stained teeth protruding from the decaying flesh of their lipless mouths.
That this could be the new form of her dearly departed grandfather chilled the girl’s blood. She did not think herse…

Genre Fluid

Sometimes when I'm pursuing publisher calls for short stories I look at my body of work and several pieces stick out to me as being genreless. Since I'm currently going through a period of writer's block, I figured now is as good time as ever to start categorizing some of these misfit stories.

Check out the list below and if you should feel so inclined give them a read and drop me a line letting me know how you think I should categorize these shorts.

1. Beneficiaries

2. The Hotel Ascendancy 

3. Adolf Hitler: Dating Meister 

4. Leave Your Aspirations at the Dump 

5. Causes
This month’s issue of the Moon magazine is out today, and it features a piece from yours truly!

http://moonmagazine.org/nicholas-johnson-big-day-2019-03-30/

The issue is called "Death. The future we seldom speak of." So you can probably guess the subject matter. The Moon is an excellent publication that features a wide array of great writers and thinkers on a month to month basis. Check this one out and peruse the archives you might find something that rocks your world or changes your life!

In the Long-run

Earth had been a quiet place the last two hundred and seventy-one years. It had come to pass that the humans once paramount on the planet had been supplanted and eventually exterminated by the electronic intelligence humanity itself had spawned.
The face of the planet was pockmarked by nuclear detonations that left irradiated plains of ruins where only the sturdiest of microbes and insects could find a use for heaps of charred human remains. There was no one to hear the bellow of the wind as it passed through the hollow caverns of a billion human skulls.
This extinction was foretold by a million Cassandras, but just like the prophet from antiquity, their warnings went unheeded. The difference this time being there was no one left to gain any insight from the resulting apocalypse.
That is no one besides the sentient electric lifeform that flowed through the countless rusting hulks of murder machines sitting idle on every planet. The whole affair of human annihilation had been pathetica…

Family Content

Melony Coasts was by all standards a very attractive women. Two births, although one admittedly was c-section, and the subsequent sixteen years of motherhood did little to diminish Melony’s radiant beauty nor dampen her lively personality.
Melony’s children her 16-year-old son Eric, and her 14-year-old daughter Sophia were the fortunate product’s of two very enviable sets of genes. Naturally, the Coasts were popular around the neighborhood. Then one day the enterprising and chronically bored Melony developed the idea of transforming her charismatic family into a lucrative YouTube series.
Melony’s optimism was not misplaced. The family was an instant internet sensation, and soon they were drawing audiences of millions. Merchandise sales and fan donations came flooding in for the already relatively wealthy Coasts.
Like more conventional television shows fans usually had a favorite star of the show. A considerable portion of the viewership was drawn in by Melony’s low cut shirts and form…

At State Expense

The Emperor's secluded island palace was a grand labyrinth connected by marble corridors gently lit by evenly spaced rows of candles. Antonious the master of the imperial treasury was being escorted by a silent guard of soldiers armor molded in silver and trimmed with gold. They walked in step, the rhythmic echo of their footsteps blended with faint moans of lust and sudden squeals of pain that emanated from the walls.
Inside the Emperor's depraved sanctuary, there was no restraint on any of his impulses no matter how debased and cruel. In all the Empire this is where his rule was truly absolute, and the master of the house subjected all inside to pleasures and torments unmatched by anything outside those walls. Antonious dreaded this place.
The palace guards didn’t lead Antonious to a grand hall for his audience with the Emperor but to a small room. The ruler didn’t sit on a throne. Instead, he sat cross-legged on the floor at the head of a short-legged table covered with a d…

Legacy

Melissa came through the door of the townhouse carrying two canvass bags brimming with groceries. She kicked the door closed behind her and lugged the bags to the kitchen. Melissa’s 7-year-old daughter Emma was in the adjoining living room sitting at a small plastic table set up in front of the TV. The surface of the child's activities desk was covered with scattered crayons and white sheet paper. Kate, the nanny was sitting on the sectional sofa directly behind Emma.
“Hey Mrs. Karvic,” Kate said.
“Hi Kate,” Melissa replied as she set the grocery bags down on the counter.
“Do you want help with those?” offered kate.
“Yes, thank you,” said Melissa.
“Mommy! Want to see what I drew?!”
“Of course I do!” Melissa said with reciprocal enthusiasm.
“Come see!” Shouted Emma
“Ok! Just a second,” said Melissa.
“This looks nice,” Kate grinned as she pulled out a bottle of red wine from one the bags.
Melissa smiled “I landed a new account today, so I thought I deserved a little treat.”
“Congrat…

Life Cycle

“We literally had a window with a view of eternity. Once I saw it in person, I decided I never wanted to think about it again.”
This was Meghan York’s most repeated sentiment about his time in space.  The infinite void rather than inspire Meghan’s mind had provoked an existential dread. The dark emptiness was something she never wanted to face again.
Upon his return to humanity’s celestial cradle, Meghan rejected the curiosities that had to lead her to the very demarcation line of human existence and instead embraced his biological imperative to raise offspring.
“Life,” Meghan told herself, “Life is the only remedy.”
Meghan was not annoyed to be awoken by the cries of her infant son crackling over the baby monitor. She was laying in bed anticipating its calls for a midnight feeding.
The crib was against the wall opposite the door. A woven canopy of softly glowing lights gently flowed out from a fixture above casting gentle shadows on the room’s sky blue paint. Hearing the door open th…

Never Look a Gift Horse in the Mouth

Karnot propped up his tired old body with his cane and quietly watched as a group of parents showed their children how to dig a small irrigation ditch. On most days a sight such as that would be enough to move the otherwise stalwart man to tears.  The 66-year-old Karnot had lost his only child, and now it was far too late for him to have another. For a man in his twilight years, it was a very lonely apocalypse. It would all die with him. But this time watching the process of one generation passing on knowledge to the next quelled his sadness. The old pioneer may not have carried his genes into the cosmos, but he could be sure he was leaving a hard fought for legacy. The survival of any species is never more than a numbers game. Life, especially in it’s more complex forms is exceedingly fragile. Matter will only take on consciousness for the briefest of periods before entropy tears the physical form apart and scatters the pieces into oblivion. Make as many copies as you can as quickly as…